How to fix a buzzing issue in a Yamaha U1 or U3

If your Yamaha U1 or U3 piano is making a buzzing noise please try the steps on this page to eliminate a few options and hopefully find the solution.

You might find that only some notes buzz, or perhaps only 1 or 2 notes make the buzz. Either way, here are some things to try to help you get to the bottom of it. I’ll list things in order of how easy they are to check.

Check room furniture and light fittings
I once spent an afternoon looking for a buzzing hinge inside a piano but in the end it was the light fitting on the ceiling behind me that was buzzing in sympathy with the piano. So if you have sideboards or cabinets or light fittings or vases in the room make yourself 100% sure that they are not the cause of the buzzing. They have a habit of “throwing sound” across the room.

Remove the top and bottom panels
Sometimes the top and bottom panels buzz against the main cabinet. Remove them both to eliminate this possibility. To remove the top panel, first fold back the very top lid and slide open the latches on each side of the inside of the piano. The top panel is now unsupported and could fall out so make sure you keep hold of it. Then lift the top panel up and away from the piano. I recommend 2 people for this task.

To remove the bottom panel kneel down and look under the middle of the keyboard and you’ll see a knob and a spring. Push the spring up and then pull the knob gently towards you. Once you have tilted the panel towards you a little lift it upwards and then away. It is not on a hinge and it will fall out if you don’t keep a tight grip of it.

With both panels removed play your piano and see if the buzzing is still there. This option quite rarely fixes the issue but it is easy to check and help get the panels out of the way whilst you check the next options.

Tighten the screws on the top hinge
Find a thin screwdriver and fold back the very top lid of the piano. You will see lots of little brass screws. Give them all a bit of an extra tighten and see if that fixes your problem.

Remove the top lid
In the previous step you tightened the screws. If that didn’t work remove all of the lower screws so that you can then completely remove the top lid away from your piano. This will help eliminate the top hinge as the source of the buzzing. If this does fix the problem then you have a buzzing top hinge and you should quirt WD40 into the hinge at various parts along its length and then open and close the hinge to help the WD40 get inside. You may also experiment with tightening/slackening the screws.

Remove the fallboard
The fallboard has a long hinge which can sometimes cause the buzz. Removing it is slightly tricky as it can be stiff but it doesn’t require any screws. I recommend 2 people for this. With the top and bottom panels already removed you are now able to slide the fallboard (the lid which goes over the keys) vertically out of the piano. Have the fallboard in the open position so that you can see the keys and then have a good firm grip and lift firmly but in a controlled way vertically. You’ll need both sides to come up at the same time to avoid getting the fallboard stuck in place. If it does get stuck don’t worry, just give the stuck side a controlled thumb.

At this point you have removed the top and bottom panel, you have removed the fallboard and you may have also removed the top lid. If you still have the same buzzing please read on…

Are the pedal rods all connected
Your bottom panel is removed at this stage so kneel down and look at the 3 pedal rods. Are they all connected and firmly in place? If one of them has fallen out or seems loose that can sometimes be the problem. Does the middle rod have a nut and bolt (often white plastic with metal bolt) part way up? If yes have a feel of these parts as they sometimes work themselves loose and then they vibrate on the rod whilst the piano is being played.

Single note or multiple notes?
If the buzzing sound affects multiple notes that are in different areas of the keyboard then it is unlikely that you will have a structural problem or any problems with the strings. It is more likely that the buzzing will be from something that has come loose and is buzzing against its neighbour.

If the buzzing sound affects only 1 or 2 notes and those notes are directly next to each other then it becomes more likely that we need to look at the health of those strings or something more structural.

Any questions, please email us at markgoodwinpianos@gmail.com